Thursday, June 30, 2005

The Ullllllllllltimate Recap

God I feel like crap as I have one of those ass-kicking summer colds so bear with me as I struggle through the latest blog so all you fuckers that make the hit counter go nuts on Mondays can finally get your Stizat fix.

Time for the weekly birthday shoutouts, this time to three of my favorite women in the whole world: Amber O'Neal, Erica Kinley (!!), and Alex Adonis. Love to all! Oh, and Brad Rainz too. Along those same lines, I normally plug everybody and their brother that has a blog, and actually...Amber O'Neal has a little diary thing goin on on her site but ya gosta head to the pay windah to see it. Nowadays ya can't mention Amber without givin a nod to Krissy Vaine, the other half of Team Blondage.

The current CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic TV champion "El Fuego" Jesse Ortega joins the BLOG family. Nothin of substance there yet although he promised me a beer if I plugged it, so there ya go. Of course I only drink those pussy mixed drinks but ya take what you can get. Meanwhile, Brass Munkey is actually trying to update his BLOG although he keeps switchin the damn URL on the thing. Check it out although if you're reading this column a year from now, he'll probably only have added one entry. Fuck a Brass Munkey.

I would SO kickass on Fear Factor if I could just dunk the bugs in that sweet icing from Domino's...oh heavenly goop, I adore you so.

Listening to Slick's "Jive Soul Bro" the other day and I could swear I heard some similar rifts and beats that would later be used in one of Afroman's, that'd be awesome if Slick ever pulled a Queen and sued "Vanilla Ice" for copyright infringement. By the way, what the hell ever happened to Slick? Holy god that guy was entertaining. There's been alot more worthless guys that never faded away into the sunset like he did.

The Charlotte Bobcats did the impossible and actually made me give a fuck about that franchise. I have pretty much turned my back on the NBA ever since Jordan's second retirement and when the beloved Hornets left town, that sealed the deal. Don't get me wrong, the NBA is still pure crap and completely watered down (Charlotte shouldn't have a franchise period that doesn't include Hugo). But along comes the NBA draft and the Bobcats use their top two picks on the UNC championship squad duo of Raymond Felton and Sean May. Absolutely brilliant in every sense of the word as the Bobcats try to capitalize on the much more popular Tarheels to actually elevate THEIR franchise (much is kinda like the WWE getting the rub from us).

Wow, Bob Saget is just WAYYY hiper than the rest of us:

I picked up the new Road Warriors DVD as well and thought it was excellent, and as good of a tribute to that duo as you could produce really. WWE does take some shots from us smartmarks on the 'net when it comes to match selection on their DVDs, but really, they do a much better job than I would have ever dreamed. I mean, really, most of the shit that's not included that we bitch and moan about is so freakin' obscure, it shouldn't be on there in the first place! The LOD DVD includes all the major career hilights as the extras: the big AWA/NWA/WWF triple crown title wins, the Crockett Cup finals, and lots of nice little goodies like the Hart Foundation match, Tenry/Hogan in Japan, and more. Point being that between myself, Stutts, and Hedd we already have almost all of this stuff but that's gonna be the case with just about every DVD they put out. But for someone that may have had a life at some point in the past 20 years, these DVDs are just pure gold. A solid ****1/2 disc (although really, anything under 4-stars for these recent DVD releases would be a joke).

I never got the chance to give my take on the "Just another night" blog over at Stutts'. That particular column would be the first chapter and his take on his original comment. It's actually kinda lonely to be me somedays. For anyone that's read this for any length of time knows that my enthusiasm towards this sport, and the live shows in general, is second to none. I can get cold chills while thinking of a good voiceover line for a future show open that may or may not ever happen. I can giddily spaz out walking around the grocery store thinking of some random dream angle. The sad part of that being is that my enthusiasm is usually met with either confused looks or general "what's wrong with you?" apathy. I think just about everyone in the biz loses some of their innocent love for the sport once they become a worker. That's the point when it actually goes from a "sport" to a "business"...when "wrestles" becomes "workers"...when "feuds" become "angles"...and so on and so forth. Somehow I've been able to maintain a purer love than many others I work with, which I attribute to the fact that I'm NOT a worker. While everyone else is in the back, I am out there with the fans and in many ways, I feel like that final tie between the sport in the ring and the business in the back. Don't get me wrong, I don't expect ANYone to exude the same amount of excitement I have when it comes to shows. But it just becomes very disheartening at times when you're spazzing out over your latest brainstorm and your fellow workers and friends respond with a resounding "Well, I'm glad YOU'RE excited" or remind me to "Chill's just another show". I'm not upset with anyone that's ever made these comments, it just takes the wind out of my sails. When I have a dream or vision FOR someone that THEY can't get excited about, then it's doomed to start with. And when it comes to a "big" show that's had the crap hyped out of it, then why shouldn't I be excited? After all, if Grant isn't excited about a show, then do you honestly think the fans are? I do agree with Stutts' assessment that we should try just as hard whether it's 20 or 200 in attendance. But this isn't about "how hard we should try" when it comes to show day. This is about those hours and days and minutes before the opening bell. When I can barely sleep the night before, when I wake up in the middle of the night knowing who definitely should be #18 in the Rumble this year, when I pace around the house anxiously on show day waiting on the time to leave, when I zone out in the car for the 90+ minute drive envisioning one possible magical moment to try and create in just a few short hours. There is NOTHING in this world that gets me as jakked on a regular basis as professional wrestling does. Sure, you might have some 5-star nookie here or there and your favorite sports team may win the championship, but on a week in and week out basis, but nothing gives me that consistent high as does this crazy sport. Yeah, that's crazy and probably not too healthy but it's the truth. Stutts' "just another night" remark is in reality, an entirely different discussion in his mind as opposed to what it meant in mine. His points on "just another night" are dead on, I agree with 100%. But the way I viewed the original "just another night" comment stung because no matter how involved I ever am in this business, I will always be a fan at heart and when I stop getting excited about a show or a hype job or a by-god Friday Night Weaver Cup Rumble Ultimate Survivor 4+ star dream matchup, then just put the fork in me cause I'm done.

Well, last Friday night brought us the inaugural edition of "Friday Night Fights", which was originally supposed to be live commentary from Hedd and myself but due to technical difficulties (as they say), I ended up doing my regular camera duties. I still wanna give the live VO a shot one of these days, but I'm under no delusions about just how difficult that will be to pull off. The great thing about post-production commentary is you always know how to pace yourself. You know your match time and can therefore can easier balance the time you spend between the back story and the actual call of each match. And with this DVD going to a much wider audience than just our usual TV viewership, it can be very difficult to accurately relay the backstory of each and every match while still giving the current bout the attention it deserves in the play-by-play. Anyways, off to the action of FNF...

1. Rising Generation League champion Kid Justice pinned Keenan Quinn in 6:05 - This was technically the dark match which is kind of a ridiculous term in the Indys but it actually did go down a half hour before the official FNF kickoff. As it turns out, I believe there will be enough time on the DVD release to squeeze this one in as well much to the delight of both guys I'm sure. Solid enough as Quinn continues to improve on the more Southern cruiser style. Good, acceptable opener. **

2. "A Very Handsome Man" Mitch Conner pinned Ultra Dragon in 9:02-

Very enjoyable match with some solid chain wrestling at the start, leading to Dragon's usual insanity, cumulating in Dragon DYING at the hands of an MC Brainbuster. Excellent stuff all around. **1/2

3. The Street Sweepers (Jay Sinn and Gregory Vercetti) defeated the CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic tag team champions $outh$ide Playas (J-Money and Will B. Smooth) in 8:26 a non-title match when Sinn pinned Money - Non-formulatic tag match that was solid enough although slightly sloppy at a couple of points when it came to the handling of J-Money's life. But everything came out just fine. **

4. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic TV champion Jesse Ortega battled Xsiris to a 10:00 time limit draw - Oh wow, did this one ever catch me by surprise. Finally (cough cough) the current TV champ meets the "greatest TV champ in the modern era" Xsiris one-on-one. And good gravy did it ever live up to the hype as Xsiris flat out wrestles his smartest match in a year by FAR and Jesse TOTALLY cements why he should be champ. Jesse goes to town on the arm trying to set up for the Fujiwara (as usual), but X goes to the mat and tries to murder Jesse's leg which is completely out of the norm of X's usual gameplan. The first time in a long time that at the end of a time limit draw, I genuinely wanted more, but you better believe that the wrestlers, the fans, and myself were DYING for 5 more minutes. Assistant Commish McAllister grants the extra 5 minutes due to some "persistence" from Ortega, but then bails and notes that that "extra 5 minutes" will go down the NEXT night. TRE-mendous hook for the next night to follow up on an already fantastic match. ***3/4

5. Mikael Yamaha and "Dangerous E" Corey Edsel defeated Brass Munkey and "Boggie Woogie Man" Rob McBride in 20:09 when Yamaha pinned McBride - This would be one of those "great dream tag matches", but like so many, the problem with dream tag matches is that those types of matches are always made up of great individuals...NOT great teams. Which, probably more than anything else, was the biggest problem here. The individual parts were certainly all solid from start to finish, but it fell short of the epic tag match that I dreamed of. Tremendous build and the match delivered what it should have for 20 minutes but then ended 5 minutes too early as the babyfaces "sure win that was yanked away by the bastard heels" never materialized **1/2

6. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion Ric Converse pinned "Madd Trucker" Garry Stevens in 14:37-

Finally, the "payoff" match that was built and built and built for what seems like forever. Now, there was NO way the match itself could live up to this kind of 5-star build but it certainly did an acceptable job. Solid psychology building towards a very bizarre (and in that moment in time, horrible) finish. Garry powerbombs Ric half to death following a ref bump, McAllister dives in to make the count and Ric doesn't kick out as much as he unconsciously rolls his shoulder up. Garry goes for powerbomb #2, Ric sweeps the legs and flips for the jacknife pin for the 1-2-3. Probably being that Garry was on the mat FORever before the 3-count and never even attempted to kick out, making the finish look completely "predetermined" (you know you ain't gonna get me to say the F word). However, skipping ahead to the next night, as Commish Cross brings the situation to light as Garry was in the jacknife the actual referee of record (Charles Richardson) had come to and made the 3-count on Garry (who was completely oblivious to the fact that his shoulders were being counted down as his sights were set on McAllister the entire time - who he knew would NOT be making the count). Somewhat convoluted in explanation form, but live, it turned what appeared on the surface to be a miserable finish to an absolutely brilliant one. Whew...anyways, match itself was pretty solid, in the **3/4-*** range. Then, post-match, Garry tries to maim Ric again to keep the angle going and who would make the save except for Brad f'n Attitude. This was pretty much akin to the CWF version of Ultimate Warrior running out at the end of WrestleMania VIII, as NO ONE had a clue this was goin down, including yours truly. Attitude had completely disappeared since way back in February and showed no signs of returning anytime soon and (I may be misquoting here so my apologies) made the comment that he wouldn't be as long as certain others were still on a CWF roster. So when someone dove into the ring to save Converse it honestly felt like I had just entered a dream sequence...I mean...that couldn't be Attitude...there's just NO way...but there he was...for better or worse, there he was. A very, very fitting end to "the big show" as Attitude and Converse stare each other down in the ring, no words, no contact, just tons of questions to be answered both in and out of the ring.

Overall FNF thoughts: First off (not that anyone ever buys 'em), but if you're after FNF, you need to buy it here: FNF DVD rather than on my usual Statmark Video matchlisting site. Anyways, a good, enjoyable payoff show for the fans in attendance. As far as the national DVD release goes, I think it was an acceptable show although nothing a CWF newbie would buy and go "I have GOT to get me more of that". On the other hand, it's nothing that's gonna make you set your DVD player on fire either. If anything, after buying the DVD, you're gonna be trying to track down Jesse-X II which brings us too....

We were right back in the CSA on Sat 6/25 for the 100th CWF event. That's actually a pretty big deal but the fact was totally glossed over as far as the show goes which is understandable. See, when you're embodying the heritage and tradition of the AWA and the whole freakin' MA territory, it almost sounds kind of strange to plug the fact that you've hit (only) 100 live events. Which is why I will frequently chime in with the whole "in the modern-day history" line (referring to the MA post-85 and AWA post-90). For those wondering, yes, my "Best of the first 100" column is still in the works and maybe it'll make it to print before 200 rolls around. Tradition aside, it's a hell of a number for a modern-day "Indy" to hit as very, very few last long enough between the financial difficulties and the general politics to produce 100 shows under the same banner. I think it's something to be very proud of personally but anyways, off to what would turn out to be a very satisfying 100th show...

There was certainly concern when it came to crowd size on night #2 at the CSA as this show (despite a very solid lineup and multiple hooks) was still standing in the shadow of the insanely hyped FNF venture. However, the crowd still delivered on night 2 and when all was said and done, you really couldn't tell a difference from Fri to Sat.

1. "Boggie Woogie Man" Rob McBride pinned "Wild" Shane West in 3:46 of a Johnny Weaver Cup tournament first round match - Yes, the 2nd edition of the Weaver Cup is underway and Rob and Shane do the perfect TV opening round matchup. Boy, if there's one guy I can count on when it comes to giving out 3 minute TV-style matches, it's Shane West. *

2. Tank Lawson pinned Classic Rock ("Classic" Chris Collins & "Rock N Roll" Matty Dee) in 3:51 of a handicap match -

A gazillion stars. Just about the funniest, most entertaining thing I've ever taped in my life. Matty puts everyone on his shoulders and makes magic out of a match gimmick that I generally detest (and he wears my Savage Dragon tshirt while doing so!). Words can't even do it justice. *1/2 in reality-land, ***** if Matty Dee rocks your face off too.

3. Brass Munkey pinned "Phenomenal" Julius Augustus in 5:10 - Fell a little flat due to the crowd's apathy towards newcomer Augustus. Munkey probably should have murderized him a little more to get the crowd going, but he's too nice of a guy somedays. *

4. Sean Powers pinned Ultra Dragon in 9:57 - Powers actually kicks it off with the best promo of his career, to the point that some of the crowd actually started cheering FOR him. Dragon then comes out, taking except to Powers' comments towards the "entertainers" that populate the sport nowadays, rather than the "wrestlers". Crowd is hot and ready to go and then the bell rings....and it dies. On a 10-match TV taping, the pacing was astonishingly good but this was the one case where the match went almost painfully too long. Four minute match that drug onto ten and completely killed the crowd in the process. None of the work was bad at all, but between Powers' general pace and Dragon's strengths being in short singles or tag matches, this one suffered greatly. *

5. "Dangerous E" Corey Edsel pinned Donnie Dollars in 5:35 of a Johnny Weaver Cup tournament first round match -

THIS is what I'm dying to see in the Weaver Cup. Random first-round pairings give us this beautimous heel monster vs. heel big man matchup. Just a ton of fun as they go toe-to-toe, brutalizing the other with the crowd not knowing what to really think. Another absolutely perfect TV match. **1/2

6. "A Very Handsome Man" Mitch Conner pinned Rising Generation League champion Kid Justice in 6:25 of a Johnny Weaver Cup tournament first round match - Good, good solid wrestling matchup as Conner advances in the tourney much to the shock of the fans. More quality TV. **1/2

7. Mikael Yamaha pinned American Steel Ninja in 6:05. Amber O'Neal was the special guest referee - Stat Trak! Yamaha-Ninja becomes the 700th match in CWF history (taking place on the 100th show to nice.) Amber gets appointed as guest ref after Yam used those darn knux again the night before on FNF. Fun little matchup and much more enjoyable in TV form that the extended 4/30 Wentworth match. Yam claims "DQ nutshot!", Ninja has Amber ask the fans, which gives Yam the chance to nut shot Ninja, cradle from behind for the three. What a jerk. **

8. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion Ric Converse pinned "the Spotlight" Scottie Gash in 7:54 of a Johnny Weaver Cup tournament first round match - Gash makes his CSA debut and you couldn't ask for a better matchup to get as him and Ric put on one heck of a show. Series of reversals in and out of finishers give Gash some major-league shine until Ric finally finishes him with the Ric-ter scale. Loved it. ***

9. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic tag team champions $outh$ide Playas (J-Money and Will B. Smooth) defeated the Street Sweepers (Jay Sinn and Gregory Vercetti) in 9:57 when Money pinned Sinn -

Fun rematch, this one for the titles, from the night before. On par for the most part, although a little smoother on all counts on night two. **

10. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic TV champion Jesse Ortega defeated Xsiris by submission in 15:56 -

The eagerly anticipated rematch from FNF. Beautiful setup as Ass. Commish McAllister tries to get involved again to prevent the injured combatants from risking their health, but Cross overrules him and says "fuck 10 minutes, fuck 15 minutes" and give X-Ortega NO time limit and the crowd LOVES him for it. X removes the arm sling he wore to the ring, Ortega removes his knee brace and it's ON. The awesome two-night story continues as they pick up where they left off and keep on going past the 10, and eventually the 15, minute mark. A series of incredible submission reversals finally ends it with X having no choice but to tap to the Fujiwara. Flat out incredibly strong psychological battle and (talk about things I never would have dreamed) a MOTYC. ****1/2. Strange that 24 hours earlier, what was almost the "forgotten" match heading into FNF fight would end up stealing the show two nights straight. By the way, will my unabashed love for this series of matches finally end the "Grant only puts over Corey/his friends?" debate. Probably But it does feel good to be able to praise a matchup between individuals that I have no personal ties with. Major props guys.

Overall thoughts - Certainly a better overall show than FNF, but the intent was so entirely different on both nights, you can't really compare them. Still one hell of a TV taping with a serious 3-4 weeks of quality TV coming out of this one (usually 2 weeks of quality stuff from one taping is the best I can hope for).

Ok, as if this sucker wasn't long enough I have one final little editorial that's itching to get's the hip word of 2005 as I've referred to it before in varying context as has Rudd and Stutts.


Perception in wrestling can be vary fascinating. We've all talked before about the fans' perception, but this time I liked to talk about the workers' perception. There are thousands of workers and psuedo-workers out there. Many of us will never cross paths. Many of us will. So much of the time, all we have to go on until we may or not meet a certain individual is word-of-mouth and the overall perception you have of a person beforehand. Sometimes that perception can be very accurate. More often than not though, reality is somewhat different than what you are led to believe. Whether it be word-of-mouth or reading this very blog, I can't help but wonder how others in this sport perceive me. If I had to venture a guess, I'd say the majority of workers that don't know me probably see me as a good hand to have around, not necessarily a huge asset, but a nice little addition. If you've worked for Ben Throckmorton, word-of-mouth would probably show me to be a know-it-all-kid with a camera who has no business trying to give his input on booking matters.

Blogs are actually a fascinating way to get people's perceptions on many issues that you may not otherwise get. Take any list of names in the NC Indys and you're gonna have a fairly large consensus on each individual name because word-of-mouth, whether it be good or bad, spreads from one worker to the next and one promotion to the next. I especially find the ACPW blogs fascinating as by and large, the majority of "our" crew isn't familiar with them at all and they're not familiar with us. So to read their perceptions on individuals that I work with on a weekly basis is especially interesting, considering almost all of that "perception" is on word-of-mouth.

Take Jesse Ortega for example. The ACPW "perception" of Jesse Ortega was born during one brief moment in time at the last Rider's show. Charlie Dreamer threw his shoulder out and in the back, there was a comment from Ortega made that was taken as disrespectful. I wasn't back there and don't know what was said. I'm not all that tight with Jesse aside from a friendly association but just knowing Jesse, I can totally see a sincere comment being taken the wrong way in the moment. Jesse's general demeanor isn't one that exudes love but he also wasn't brought up to be disrespectful in the locker room either. But ever since that one moment, their perception towards Jesse, whether right or wrong, is firmly set for the time being. Look at how many people even now perceive Brad Hunter as having an attitude problem. A few years back I think many saw Mikael Yamaha in the same light.

With Stuttsy getting involved in ACPW, they certainly have gotten their fair share of pluggin lately from his end of things. Me? Never worked there. So what are my perceptions of ACPW going ONLY on the topic of word-of-mouth and from reading around the circle of blogs? I don't know how true any of this is or isn't, but this is a perfect example of how much perception can sometimes mean...I perceive ACPW as a very tight locker room with Trey G coming off as a very stand-up promoter that has built a good solid fan base in their area. They have some very solid talent at the top with the biggest drawback in their shows being non-finishes and putting multiple gimmick matches on the same show.

Another name that keeps getting dropped as of late is Moses Manson. Boy, you wanna talk about perception. On the name along, when Stuttsy first mentioned him to me and knowing NOTHING about the guy, I immediately thought "why in the world would Stutts want to do a manager war with a guy doing a Marilyn Manson gimmick?". Seriously. And then I saw him on (of all things) TWE. Even though the abysmal TV production, I could still SEE what Stutts saw. And in that one moment in time, the perception gets changed.

KC McKnight? Saw him work briefly in Riders and enjoyed his charisma and as much work as you can get out of a tag team 3-way. But his livejournal is what really puts him over with me because you can see that he LOVES this sport. There's alot of blogs out there, but give me a guy that showers this sport with love in his blog over someone that constantly bitches about it anyday.

The point of all this? Perception is something that everyone gets labeled with. Whether true or not, it's a label you can either change or confirm. Sometimes all we have to go on is perception but when you cross paths with someone that has a label already applied, make sure you give them the chance to modify it.

Crap, I'm tired....I hope my rambling made to all and holy ball sacks am I ever blown up.

Friday, June 24, 2005

The 10th Anniversary Column

I am posting this column on the 10th anniversary (to the day) that I taped my very first Indy show. After that day I stumbled in and around the Indys in 1995 with my move to Wisconsin the following year completely taking me out of the scene entirely until '98. That was when I hooked up with Chris Plano and started trying to get my foot in the door and when that ran it's course, a chance email to Jeff Rudd in late 2000 would change my life. But this column isn't about trying to recap the last 3,653 days. It's about taking a look back at that fateful night of June 24, 1995 as I met the Southern Indys face to face for the first time ever.

Sometime prior to that day I had passed a poster in Burlington plugging a random local Indy show that even proclaimed itself to be a "TV taping". Intrigued, and already obsessed with the sport since 1987, I gave the phone number on the poster a call. Already working in television at the time, it wasn't exactly a tough sell to let a local indy promoter to grant me permission to tape the show. Pretty much the same thing would happen 5 years later with Jeff. The man that allowed me to enter the "hallowed halls" for the first time was Brian Bruise, who I would come to find out was 1/2 of the Heartbreak Express; one of the "premiere" tag teams of the time. He had a show coming up at the National Guard Armory in Roxboro which I was welcome to attend and tape. The name of the promotion: none other than ACW. Outside of just a crazed desire to get going, I had absolutely NO clue what the heck I was getting myself into and despite my extensive video background, I was a true fish out of water in this setting. I got to Roxboro insanely early (a tradition I still try and maintain to this day which drives any traveling companion insane). I even beat the ring there and spent much of my time hanging out outside yakking with, among others, Sgt. Max Rhodes. I had not perfected the technique of "more listen, lessen talk" and was just so spazzed to be standing in an empty parking lot where a by god RING was gonna be arriving anytime in the next three hours that I was rambling on about anything and everything. That's the first time I ever heard the term "kayfabe". I read some of the sheets, and knew most of the lingo, but I have NEVER EVER heard this bizarro word "Kayfabe". After me hitting him with a million questions and trying to drag out a discussion of the King of the Ring PPV the next night, Sarge hit me with "You think you know it all kid? Have you ever heard of kayfabe?". Which was pretty much his double entranda for "You're not as smart as you think you are" and "Shut the fuck up". I think my response was "Kay what?", followed by a much quieter wait for the ring.

Well the ring finally got there which brings me to heading to the videotape library to recount the rest of the show. The ring itself would go onto more notoriety as the famed NDW ring that for once special weekend in 1999 resided in my backyard. The first person I see is this long haired hippy looking guy messing around with a PA and at times laughing uncontrollably. Yes indeed, 10 years ago, my very first Indy show and who else was there running sound and doing the announcing than Randy "Randolph" Hedrick. I honestly hadn't even gone back and looked at this tape in years and was stunned to see Hedd right there on my TV. Boy, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Very nice crowd filled up the NGA this night, looks to be in that 100 range and they're an extremely hot crowd, even towards the questionable workrate. I scanned to crowd to see if I could spot any "Before they were stars" but the only recognizable face would be Ken Spence (fellow wrestling promoter and trainer back in the day that I still have serious heat with, but that's a different story). Your referee for the evening is Buster Cranford, who according to Hedd, would quit the sport after LA Wild One pantsed him during a show for fucking up too many times.

1. Lumbee Warrior and the Rock N' Roll Rebel defeated "Wild" Bill Armstrong and the Russian Assassin 2 in 12:01 - Wowzers, what an opener this was. This would be Lumbee's rookie year and he would develop into one of the area's top workers in the late '90s before finally disappearing in 2002. Despite being very competent, he will probably be best remembered as Ric Converse's original tag team partner. On the completely other end of the spectrum, "Wild" Bill will best be remembered for hijacking the NDW van and hightailing it to Florida as the cops tried to track him down for child molestation chargers. Seriously. As for the match itself, Lumbee is still too green to actually make it watchable and pretty much just takes an extended heat sequence devoid of any psychology whatsoever for a painful first half of the match while the babys get no shine at all. But everyone gets clotheslines. Lotsa clotheslines. As Indy as it gets and not in the good sense. DUD, and that's being generous.

2. Sgt. Max Rhodes and Mad Dog Davidson defeated Future Shock (Hot Stuff and Hammer Man) in 8:03 when Davidson pinned Hot Stuff. Future shock has good charisma and look as a genuine tag team which is pretty tough to find in the Indys, especially back then. Hot Stuff claimed to have played for the Atlanta Falcons but would go on to greater fame for accidentally breaking Tim Blaze's leg in two places. The match itself was by no means a classic, but still a vast improvement on the opener. 1/2*

Tim Blaze does an interview segment in which he brings out former manager Dr. Lee Luv, who brings out his new tutelage, Bonecrusher, which sets up...

3. "Red Hot" Tim Blaze battled ACW Heavyweight champion Bonecrusher Curtis to a double-countout in 6:48. Bonecrusher also has a valet in his corner named Destiny, who believe it or not, is the SAME Destiny currently appearing with Scar Stevens 10 years later. It's crazy to think that the only 3 people that would be involved on this ACW show 10 years ago that are still active with CWF today are Destiny, Hedd, and myself. Match itself is basic big baby bumping around the chickenshit heel until it goes to the outside, leading to a very lame double-countout. *1/2

4. The Terminators defeated the Heartbreak Express (Brian Bruise and L.A. Wild One) in 14:49 of a no-disqualification, lights out street fight to win the ACW tag team titles. This was actually a matchup between the two main Indy tag teams of the area back then. The Terminators look like total generic masked jobbers (ala Rock N' Roll Rebel from earlier), but somehow got majorly over with the fans to the extent that 7 years later, we were still dealing with that blasted "We want the Terminators!" chant at NEW shows in Thomasville. On the other hand, Bruise and LA totally look the part as a legitimate championship Indy tag team. The match starts with the babys over strong before it totally breaks down under the no DQ stips. LA attempts to backdrop a Terminator on a table, who neither jumps or flips and comes down head-first on the table. Really started to fall apart towards the finish with a blown finish sequence. Not a bad little match early on, but if the psychology had been a little stronger with the heels being more dastardly, the crowd would have been going apeshit. **

5. ACW Heavyweight champion Bonecrusher Curtis won a 13-man $10,000 battle royal in 6:02. Order of elimination: Armstrong by Bonecrusher, Lumbee by Bruise, Terminator 2 by Bruise, Red Scorpion by Blaze (Scorpion only worked the battle royal and was a running joke for years as this rather rotund larger man that never finished training would just show up at shows gimmick in hand), Terminator 1 by Bruise, Rhodes by Hammer Man, Davidson by Hammer Man, Hammer Man by LA, Hot Stuff by Blaze (leaving the 3 heels on the one babyface with expected results), LA by Bonecrusher, Bruise by Bonecrusher, Blaze by Bonecrusher. It should be noted that just before Blaze got tossed, Bonecrushed attempted a powerbomb that was almost unintentionally Tiger Driver-like as Blaze never gets up and comes down on the back of his head. Not too murdersome, but I still popped for it live. Acceptable by battle royal standards, *.

Overall thoughts - Not even close to the standard that's been set from OMEGA to present CWF day to what's capable in an Indy show, but rather than dwell on the bad, let's hit the good:
-THREE legitimate looking tag teams on the same show. That's darn hard to come by as I've alluded to before and major props for that.
-The strong booking of Bonecrusher Curtis who is very limited in the ring but all the proper steps were taken to utilize him as a monster.
-The show didn't drag on to 7-8 matches and to a painfully long 3+ hour length like so many shows do.

All in all, a passable show but more for personal nostalgia value than anything else. I'm very thankful to Brian Bruise for letting me partake in the festivities, much like I would be to Chris Plano a few years later. If I had never had those moments, it probably wouldn't have changed the course of history much as I would have still sent the email to Jeff and probably still have been with CWF since the start but it was still a cool experience back in the day. And, as they say, you never forget your first.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Sportscasters and shows

As I've mentioned before, it's always interesting to see what yahoo and goggle searches stumble upon my blog. My newest favorite: "most ridiculous use of statistics".

Couple of non-athletic sports items going on that appeal to only me, but it's my blog so therefore, we shall discuss:

Keith Olbermann and Dan Patrick will REUNITE for one hour a week on Fridays on ESPN Radio starting in August. For those that don't know (as it has been several years), from 1992 to 1997, the tag team of Olbermann and Patrick pretty much revolutionized just what a sports anchor COULD be and led to the booming popularity and love for ESPN's Sportscenter, the ramifications which can still be felt today. To say I LOVED Olbermann and Patrick is an understatement. They were the first ones to really bring in running gags and tounge-in-cheek comments that were "smart", as opposed to so many other sports anchors who just came off as "smart asses". You simply can't fake chemistry and trying to force chemistry that isn't there will always lead to failure. Olbermann and Patrick had that genuine chemistry that made Sportscenter required nightly viewing. In fact, I STILL have Olbermann's final Sportscenter from 1997 on tape and throw it in once a year to reminsce about just HOW good that show used to be. The only combo that ever even came close to touching them was Stuart Scott and Rich Eisen, but that was moreso because they were two tremendous individual announcers than a great tag team. Anyways, god only knows if I'll ever be able to get ESPN radio dialed in at the appropriate time as my house as WFNZ (and AM stations in general) start to die before they reach my backwoods ass house. But the fact remains that my favorite tag team that never stepped foot in a squared circle is indeed back.

In other less than exciting news, John Madden will join the NBC Sunday Night Football package in 2006. This announcement was made with the following Hall of Fame quote from Dick Ebersol, chairman of NBC:

"John Madden is the best analyst in the history of the National Football League and, in my opinion, the best analyst of any kind in sports television history. John is much more than a football legend, he's an American icon."

I would like to follow that quote up with a quote from ME that I posted on April 20th, right here on the blog:

"Hell, I can't even celebrate the fact that John Madden is out of a job, cause just like when CBS closed up shop in '95, either ESPN (or preferably NBC) will pay him the $ to bring him to their broadcast team cause god knows unlike Al Michaels, who's only a million times more versatile, Madden is for some ungodly reason a football icon and just HAS to have a spot behind the booth. I can honestly say that in my years in broadcasting with FOX, I never once worked with a LOCAL sports anchor that was as worthless as Madden, who gets a national stage every week."

Now, who are you gonna believe, Dick Ebersol or me? Please.....

Hey! Let's head to Greensboro, outdoors this past Wednesday night at the by-god Coliseum for "One Hot Summer Night" (take deux):

1. Amber O'Neal and CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic TV champion Jesse Ortega defeated Mikael Yamaha and Krissy Vaine in 11:20 when O'Neal defeated Vaine by submission -

Pretty basic goofball tag match with the pros just having some fun out there with the hilights being Yam bumping like a champ off of Jesse's shoulderblock and following it up with some excellent intensity that I hope he brings for FNF next week. The cinematography and photography were just beautiful as evidence by Randolph's above shot. Cool little double tap finish that was never taped because somebody tried to turn the big lights on during the finishing sequence and blew the power to the camera, PA, etc. Wonderful.... *3/4

2. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion Ric Converse pinned "A Very Handsome Man" Mitch Conner in 7:10 of a non-title match -

The rubber match in the series with Ric winning it. Like before, very basic, solid enough stuff. Ric just continues to just look the part and present himself as everything a champion should be. Not as good as their previous two, but that wasn't the intent. Still sound. **

3. "Boogie Woogie Man" Rob McBride won a $1,000 10-man "Blacktop Battle Royal" in 15:03. Order of elimination: Michael McAllister by Alex Adonis in 3:25...J-Money by Garry Stevens in 6:14...Stevens by Money and Xsiris in 6:50...Brass Munkey by Tank Lawson in 8:08...Kid Justice by Adonis and Corey Edsel in 9:03...Adonis by McBride in 10:10...Xsiris by Edsel in 10:41...Lawson by McBride in 11:18...Edsel by McBride in 13:38 -

Only the second battle royal in CWF history by the way. And don't we all remember the days when the staple of an Indy show WAS the battle royal? Anyways, I've always been a big battle royal mark but for some reason this one came off very flat and disjointed to me. Alex Adonis decides to go into business for himself before the match and get in Ric's face at ringside (who's still there signing autographs). Money and Stevens continue their secondary feud with some good intensity as do Rob-Corey-Munkey. Only the last :60 of this will probably ever see the light of broadcast day as Corey MURDERS Rob with the nastiest exploder EVER only to get his foot caught in the ropes seconds later (ala Cactus and the ear incident). Corey frees himself, Rob dropkicks him off the apron for the win. 3/4*

Overall thoughts: Make no mistake, this show was NOT about workrate or great matches. Just a little promotional dealio that shouldn't even be ranked against your normal shows. Now, compared to the other Greensboro Coliseum shows, I would certainly rank it as the weakest of the three. But thank god for our regular fans who showed to lead the crowd making the experience in general a bazillion times better than the last one in February.

Onto Friday and an exhibition match at the ACE Speedway in Altamahaw, NC. First time I had ever actually been to a racetrack while cars were actually making the left hand turns. I did an NDW show back in '98 at the Concord racetrack but that was a stand-alone show. Pretty interesting stuff and that's coming from someone who could care less about NASCAR. Anyways, it was basically a meet and great with the legends (Don & Rocky Kernodle, Ivan Koloff, Johnny Weaver, and Jimmy Valiant). The modern day guys then did one match between races which saw the following result:

1. Brass Munkey, "Boogie Woogie Man" Rob McBride, and CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic TV champion Jesse Ortega (with CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion Ric Converse in their corner) defeated Tank Lawson, Keenan Quinn, and "A Very Handsome Man" Mitch Conner in 11:59 when McBride pinned referee Redd Jones and special guest enforcer Jimmy Valiant made the count - Yes, a statistical nightmare (which for the record breaks down to 1 win for each member of the babys, 1 loss for each member of the heels, 1 pinfall scored for McBride, and an 0-0 record for Redd Jones but a pinfall loss attributed to his record. Booya!). A petty enjoyable match especially considering that it was as ad-libbed as anything we've probably ever thrown in a ring. Some cool visuals with the thousands in attendance as the backdrop and the sunset giving some wicked silhouette. Anyways, Redd works as a heel ref (which I normally hate and we'd never do, but in this setting it was more than fine) which leads to the champ getting involved, murdering Redd with the Ric-ter scale, Rob making the cover while everyone else is planching to the outside, the original Boogie dives in and makes the count. Fun stuff. **

Hedd's car knocked out on the way back after the show which led to us crashing at his place in High Point Fri night, thus taking us to Saturday 6/18 (whew, what a week) for the "Pffaftown Showdown" for our final show at the West Central Community Center. Which is a major show cause we were finally building that town to be something special with slowly growing crowds and some hellagood shows. But, as they had done in the past, the building breaks their lease and screws us over...oh well, just have to find another spot in the Winston area to replace it. No biggie, I just feel bad for the fans that were just awesome for us last night and now have to make the hour drive to Burlington or wherever to see us in action.

1. Scottie Gash pinned "A Very Handsome Man" Mitch Conner in 9:23 - Gash (as a baby) comes out to some form of entrance music that kicks off with the phrase "Mother Fucker" which hopefully will never see the light of day again on a CWF show. After that faux pas, this turned into a fantastic opener. Flat out solid wrestling with the build leading towards several believable (and not finish-killing) false finishes. ***

2. Xsiris pinned Rising Generation League champion Kid Justice in 9:50 to win a shot at the Television title on "Friday Night Fights" - The hits keep on coming as X and Justice have a seriously good cruiserweight match. This match was originally supposed to be X and Krazy K but I firmly believe it wouldn't have been as good or sound as what this one turned out to be. Pretty spotty and all as you would expect, but it still made sense and no true finishers were killed. Justice just bumped his ass off during this match and when all was said and done, this match totally MADE Xsiris a VERY credible challenger heading into FNF. ***

3. GeeStar and AWA Mid-Atlantic TV champion Jesse Ortega defeated Scar Stevens and Keenan Quinn (with Destiny in their corner) in 14:12 when Ortega defeated Stevens by submission - Destiny was scheduled to be in this one but threw her back out earlier in the week but we didn't find out until an hour or so before the match that she wouldn't be working it at all. This led to some "discussions" in the back in which I probably didn't endear myself to her ("I've been called worse by alot better than you"...ohhhh TAG). As it turned out, it was probably for the best. She comes out on cane, being the chickenshit heel trying to back out of the match and Scar brings out Quinn as his replacement partner. I actually kinda dig Gee and Ortega as one of the most oddball duos ever because their energy level is just SOOO off the charts. Basic old school formula with some really solid chain stuff by Jesse early. Gee takes some non-dramarific heat for a change (that being a good thing). Scar accidentally clocks Quinn with the cane to KO him, Jesse puts a submission on Scar while Destiny tries to run in but gets the DDT from Gee. Gee/Jesse then do the double submission on Scar for the immediate give. Crowd ate it up like crazy. ***

4. "Dangerous E" Corey Edsel pinned Brass Munkey in 20:36 of a falls count anywhere street fight -

The rematch from the MOTYC from the last Pffaftown show. Completely different as the last one was a highly intense wrestling match while this one was an out and out brawl. I'm not as big on hardcore style matches although there was no trash can lids or ladders or fire or barbed wire to be found here. It was more or less "hardcore" with a purpose, as Corey and Munkey bounced one another's heads and torsos off of every corner of the Rec Center. Corey had multiple bruises around his face midway through. Munkey breaks out an old Corey standby, the mist (green in this case) making for some flat out awesome visuals as he blew his load and then some. For the finish, two lariats can't put Corey away and on the third, Corey ducks and hooks somehow, jumping Tombstone and it's goodnight Walter. **** although those that actually love this style of wrestling would probably rate it higher. Still a wonderful addition to this feud's library.

5. The Shadow, "Wild" Shane West, and "Madd Trucker" Garry Stevens defeated CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion Ric Converse and the CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic tag team champions $outh$ide Playas (J-Money and Will B. Smooth) in 21:51 when Stevens pinned Converse -

Tremendous 6-man with action from the opening bell and a super hot crowd to thrive off of. Money and Garry kick it off with their secondary feud with Money again pulling out that "unexpected intensity". Garry and Ric have no contact until Garry nails him with the billy club in the back of the head midway through the match. Ric is able to make the tag but still favors his neck constantly for the remainder of the match. Smooth continues to grow on me more and more as the "you may beat my ass half to death but I'll club you with something hard be-atch" member of the Playas. We finally get Garry-Ric one on one 20 minutes in but Garry gets over due to Ric's neck and then stuffs him with a powerbomb on the neck again and 1, 2, 3. You can honestly hear the GASPS from the crowd as they totally expected Ric to kick out. Tremendous energetic old school match. ***1/2 The Playas help Ric out as Garry gloats maniacally and the fans couldn't WAIT till next Friday.

Overall thoughts - This was almost the forgotten show taking place just 6 days prior to FNF but turned into an awesome house show that was TV quality from start to finish. And good lord, how often do we get to do TWO 20 minute matches and the show not drag on forever. Ahhh, the magic of 5 matches and a hot crowd. In the long term, this show probably meant very, very little but as a stand along show, it was great.

After the show, Munkey's fam had a small group of us over for Midnight breakfast by the pool which was wonderfully nice although I was kinda out of it for a variety of reasons. Next time I wanna do a bummer blog, maybe I'll hit some of those notes but there's so much happiness with the shows and all here lately, that I'll save it for now. stop: Friday Night Fights and for me personally, it's the biggest task ever, handling LIVE commentary with Hedd for the AWA DVD release. Then next Sat, it's the kickoff of the VERY intriguing Weaver Cup and the 100th CWF event although that stat probably won't be capitalized on all that much. To say the least, next Sunday, I'll be one hoarse mo fo.

The Longest Yard - I actually went to the theater for the first time in FOREVER to check out a movie. Of course I only did so because I had a coupon that got me two seats for $1 so it didn't exactly break the bank or nothin. So once again it's time to quench that off-season football thirst with the Adam Sandler remake of the 1974 movie. Well, I love football and I love wrestling so I can't even imagine what they could do to fuck this one up for me. So yeah, it's great....let's get that out of the way first. The casting is perfect including Michael Irvin playing the same fuckhead that he is in real life. Wasn't too big on Goldberg in this, but everyone else did a great job, especially Giant Singh and Bop Sapp, who just flat out steals each and every scene. Strangely enough, the training camp sequences in the prison are actually more beautifully shot and captivating than the actual football game that's played at the film's "climax". In fact, the payoff itself is almost a letdown when compared to the actual build (boy, how many times do you say that in wrestling). Still fun stuff and any movie that gives me Brian Bosworth and Dan Patrick is a big thumbs up. ****1/4

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Sometimes ya just wanna cuss...and eat a Pop-Tart

Normally in this space you would find the show review BUT we got the call on the way to the Greensboro Coliseum that "One Hot Summer Night" had been changed to "One Rained Out Summer Night", with the show being moved to THIS Wednesday. I was half-tempted to post a complete BS review of the show that never happened and go into the DQ finish that occurred and Corey Edsel stinking up the joint, but either people wouldn't get it or take it seriously. I tell ya, THAT's the one reason I REALLY should be living up in Alamance County considering we now have 5 shows in 11 days up there coming up. Because of the added trip, I had to forgo my vieweing of the ECW PPV with the boys last Sunday which was a real bummer, as it turned out to live up to all the hype. Dammit.

Since we have the met the minimum requirement of two, let's do the birthday shoutouts for the week to my MOM (who's out partying in Vegas right now...seriously), Atty, and Chris Collins, who's officially old enough to rock out at 21.

As far as Michael Jackson goes, I'm not shocked AT ALL and I will be truly stunned if any "beloved" celebrity actually gets convicted of any serious charges in our lifetime without concrete videotape evidence. End of story.

Lindsay Lohan has so completely destroyed her utter hotness with that damn anorexia look that I have had to notae her listing on my sidebar's "TO DO LIST" as "2003-2004 only". One of the great travesties of the modern-day do-able whores and even worse than Brittney Spears' redneck/pregnant/goober hubby drawbacks to her otherwise wonderful sluttiness.

Got to see the 4th quarter of Arena Bowl XIII between Amsterdam and Berlin this past weekend. Hey, it's the offseason so I'm bustin a nut to see any kind of professional football. Anyways, Amsterdam wins 27-21 barely surviving a 4th quarter comeback by the Thunder which made for some enthralling TV. Amsterdam's up 27-14, Berlin cuts it to 27-21 and has Amsterdam on 3rd down with like 4 1/2 minutes left at the 50 when they get called for roughing the passer. Then, on the very next series, the refs call a VERY questionable pass interference, keeping the Admirals alive. Berlin FINALLY gets the ball back but only has 90 seconds rather than the 4 1/2 if not for the penalties. Texans backup QB Dave Ragone then drove Berlin ALL the way down the field to the 22 in an incredible drive than ended with a heart-stopping batted-around-ball-in-the-end-zone which barely fell incomplete. **** 4th quarter baby. Awesome stuff that makes me miss the regular season that much more.

Tried the Marshmallow Fruit Loops cereal for the first time the other day. Yeah, it's been out for awhile now but it was finally on sale with that Food Lion MVP dealio. I tell ya one thing, if you like some sugar on your sugar in the morning, THAT is your cereal. Hell, just opening the box is almost blinding between the regular Fruit Loops and the tie-dyed marshmallows. Much like one memorable commentary line: "It's a cloudy day, but not where Rocket's standing". On the cereal scale, I'd rate it a solid **** and Spaz-arific.

I have never done a Pop-Tart rant in this space and god knows anything that's been a part of my life as long as those suckers have been definitely deserve some accolades in this space. I have walked hand-in-hand with my beloved Frosted Cherry for years and years now, only occasional partaking in her friends and sisters. I tell ya one thing, that Hot Fudge Sundae is one nasty concoction and I'm sorry I EVER went there. I wish they'd take it's pic off the back of all the other Pop-Tart boxes cause my stomach cramps ever time I see it's photo. I sure do miss the only Pop-Tart that ever gave Frosted Cherry a run for it's money...way back in '86-'87, they had a very short lived Pop-Tart in the form of....Peanut Butter and Jelly. Seriously. Hardly anyone has ever heard of these things and googling it will give you very little info. But they were made and were tremendous. One day I had the brainstorm that "MY GOD these things are so incredible, can you imagine just HOW great they would be if I actually put Peanut Butter and Jelly on TOP of a Peanut Butter and Jelly Pop-Tart???". This experiment was an unequivocal disaster which resulted in me having to dump my beloved PB & J Pop-Tart in the trash. One thing I always used to love about Pop-Tarts was the warning they put on the side of the box: "NOT suitable for microwave use". Even though it's not like your microwave was gonna implode upon injection of a Pop-Tart, they HAD to keep the gimmick alive and as we all know, a Pop-Tart can't POP in a microwave.

I'm not about to post the whole CWF record book on the BLOG again until Battlecade rolls around but since I did just finish updating, I wanted to take a moment and take note of some NEW record holders out there so feel free to go mark out for your bad self:

*Ric Converse had the second longest winning streak in company history finally ended at 12 on 5/21 with a loss to Mitch Conner. Corey Edsel holds the record at 13 back in 2002-2003. However, in that same streak, Converse DID set the record for "Most consecutive matches scoring a pin" at 12.
*Jesse Ortega has obliterated the "Most Successful Title Defenses" record, now at 14 successful defenses. Converse's current reign actually has the #2 spot at 11.
*Chris Collins has extended his "Most consecutive matches without a win" streak to 22, second-all time now behind Trent Wylde at 25. Those same statistics can be applied to the "Most consecutive matches without scoring a pin" record as well.
*Brass Munkey and American Steel Ninja have become the most successful duo in company history, recording their 21st win as a team on 5/20, breaking the original SouthSide Playas' record of 20 wins.
*By pinning American Steel Ninja on 6/4, Corey Edsel became the first man to record 50 pinfall/submissions in CWF history.

Be Cool - Like many of my co-workers, I was just catching "Be Cool" to see the Rock (and Vince Vaughn, one of my favorite modern day actors). In that sense, the movie delivers. Both Rock and Vaughn are tremendous in their roles and easily steal every scene they're in. Of course, they're probably only in 25% of the movie which still leaves a lot to fill. And it's really not bad, just kind of...there. The opening scene leaves you with VERY high expectations for the entire film but never really hits those high notes again. Overall, it served it's purpose and was passable viewing, but not quiet to the level that you'd really want to own it. **3/4

Seed of Chucky - I actually hadn't watched a "Chucky" movie in years and was kinda digging the chance to see this. First off, the "seed" is one creepy looking fucker who's image is one that sticks in your brain and you have nightmares about for weeks to come. They do a nice Ed Wood tribute by arguing if the kid's name is "Glen or Glenda" throughout the film. 5 stars for that. Alot of subtext in regards to raising children and the politics of Hollywood. Aside from that, the movie actually has a disturbingly darker tone than what I expected. A much smarter film than it'll ever be given credit for, but not necessarily an enjoyable one either. Tough to grade as by and large, they did make a pretty decent flick (especially for what the mainstream considers to be B-level crap), but much like "Be Cool", one viewing is probably all a person needs in their life. **1/2

Hitch - I had SERIOUS doubts about this one as the original commercials just screamed "Hey! We're gonna pull you in with funny, albeit completely generic, comedy bits so you can pray to god that the whole film is at least this passable". Eh, it worked. Ok, first off, it's a romantic comedy so if it breaks **, it might as well be a home run. The first hour is actually enjoyably solid as even the generic, see-it-coming stuff, is strung together so well that you really don't mind. Will Smith actually does an excellent job and the pacing is superb. Kevin James is great as well. And then the second half of the movie rolls along where we get into this generic love story BS as we stretch for ANY reason for the two falling in love to have a tift. I don't get this at all: I mean, the basic premise for why they are even fighting in "Hitch" is just so utterly ridiculous, I couldn't believe they were even going with it as the real reason. But they do so we take a half hour for couple to fight and then get back together. Hell, they might as well have made that last hour a dream sequence, cause it was a completely waste of time. Yeesh, very passable first half, painfully pointless second half...well, would ya looka there: **.

A Dirty Shame - Finally! After what seems like forever and a day, "A Dirty Shame" has finally been released!! Only problem is, the only version available to me was NOT cover box you see above but rather the horribly watered down "R-Rated (aka Neuter version)". Soooo...first the actual film: Completely fucked up Grade A John Waters stuff. Every is just great including Tracy Ullman who I usually don't care for at all. Johnny Knoxville and Selma Blair are fantastic, although Blair wasn't in the movie enough for my tastes. Even the soundtrack is just off the wall insanely brilliant. Now, don't get me wrong, as much as I loved finally getting able to see it, I don't think it's quiet on the same level as Waters other mainstream pics like "Serial Mom" and "Hairspray". BUT it is probably the best hybrid of the original Waters classics and the mainstream Waters classics, that any person could have done. **** Ok, now this R-rated version. Holy GAWD was this thing annoying. I understand having to trim some content to go from NC-17 to an R rating but the MPAA completely butchered this movie. I have NEVER see such an editing job to this extent. They removed virtually every curse word in the movie which leads to it looking like a Japanese film dubbed in English. Every use of the "F" word (and any mildly offensive off color language) is completely removed to the extent that this edited version could honestly get a PG-13 rating. Don't get me wrong, I love "South Park", but how in the hell did "South Park: Bigger, Longer, & Uncut" get an R rating with all of it's language and this one gets an NC-17 is beyond me. THAT's how fucked up the MPAA is. I haven't heeled on that organization in a long time but damn, they are a complete and utter joke. Leave our damn movies alone and let the original director's vision LIVE. That's why we all go to film school. That's why we spend thousands on education. OUR education. To perfect our craft. We spend years and years practicing our art in order to be able to create a vision WE have in OUR mind. Not YOUR mind. Not for some political cooperation to take scissors to and castrate it. Fuck the MPAA. Fuck Full-screen movies. If you as a parent can't figure out by looking at the cover box of a "Dirty Shame" that it just MAY not be appropriate for kids, then you SUCK as a parent. That's why the MPAA exists: because they have to have a governing body that will excuse the fucking morons of this world.

And on that to all! Booya!

Monday, June 06, 2005

Never Say Never Indeed

Right after our latest addition to the Mid-Atlantic Wrestling BLOG family in Kamakazi Kid, we now welcome none other than the MA champ himself, "Slick" Ric Converse. To me, that's kinda cool considering Ric is pretty much the MAN as far as this area goes and much like the #1 representative for the company, it kinda adds a little credence to this goofy little fad Stutts started way back in October 2003 and many of the rest of us have picked up on since that time. I've been able to watch Ric in action since 2001 and don't get me wrong, Ric was a heck of a talent even back then but for those that never saw him back then, you would never believe it's the same guy. From his work ethic, to his workrate, to his promos, to his mentality and just the way he flat out carries himself, Ric Converse is everything the modern-day prototype professional wrestler SHOULD be.

Ya know, the "Little House on the Prairie" really wasn't that fact, that was a pretty big fuckin house on the prairie all things considered.

CWF was back in action Sat night to officially kick off the "Summer Action Series" tour at the CSA with a TV taping (that wouldn't provide a whole lotta TV), and the officially big ass plug for "Friday Night Fights" on 6/24. Spent most of the afternoon shooting pretapes and promos that would air the following weeks on TV and for FNF and it certainly felt like the most production promo session we've EVER had and I'm very proud of that and thankful for everyone that participated. Pretty solid crowd that was certainly into enough early on before we effectively killed that. Personally, my role in this show was slightly different this time around as the first half was spent training Troxler on the main camera which is no easy task during a live show but all things considered, he did a more than adequate job. Although he disappeared on me after intermission which leads me to believe he was curled up in the fetal position crying somewhere.

1. Julius Augustus and the Street Sweepers (Jay Sinn and Gregory Vercetti) defeated Ultra Dragon and Classic Rock ("Classic" Chris Collins & "Rock N Roll" Matty Dee) in 11:21 -

Fun 6-man opener that went WAYYYY too long for an opener, thereby starting a series of chain reactions and setting a standard that would carry through the majority of the night. Augustus made his debut and having never seen him work before, my initial impressions are that he has a very good physique and favors working the right leg. The Street Sweepers are still coming along as a pretty solid heel duo while the babyface trio is of course gold from top to bottom. Nothing offensive, just long for what was needed. **

2. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion Ric Converse pinned Donnie Dollars in 4:21 of a non-title match -

A million billion stars. Every person involved with the match got over, the crowd was hot for the entire thing, and left them wanting more, not less. Much like my beloved Munkey/Ninja-Tungsten/Houston Battlecade match, one of the absolutely most perfect TV matches you could EVER have. **1/2

3. Rising Generation League champion Kid Justice pinned Otto Schwanz in 13:37 - A rematch from 4/30 Wentworth with Justice tying the series. Schwanz as a heel is still too over with the crowd to truly get booed and, as is the case with WWE (as I steal this from Scott Keith's journal) "fans these days will cheer strong characters in general, regardless of heel-face alignment, because everyone is booked to be such losers most of the time." Thankfully, that's not a problem we have in CWF too often because just about everyone is booked as strongly as humanly possible. But I can definitely see that being a fair analysis of this particular match because Justice, as solid of a cruiser as he is, hasn't been able to overcome the mid-card hell status ever since the loss of Orlo. Certainly solid wrestling but went WAY too long and by and large, but this would be the match that began the downward spiral for the rest of the show. *3/4

4. "Madd Trucker" Garry Stevens and Caprice "Ice" Coleman defeated Xsiris and Brass Munkey in 13:34 when Coleman pinned Munkey - This match can pretty much be summed up as a counterproductive nightmare and god knows it will never see the light of day anywhere, anyhow aside from a couple of clips winding up in a highlight reel somewhere. Don't get me wrong, aside from a couple of psychology holes, it wasn't a BAD match by ANY means. But you had the pushed tweener, the returning superstar, one of the top heels in the company, and one of the top babys in the company and NONE of them could afford to take the pin. Make no mistake, the wrong man definitely took the pin in this one, but on the other hand, there wasn't a RIGHT man to take the pin in this match. Then add the fact that once again, it went WAY too long and I'd just prefer to pretend this match never happened.

5. "Dangerous E" Corey Edsel pinned American Steel Ninja in 9:33 -

Four months after the fact, Corey and Ninja FINALLY have their singles showdown. Better late than never though. Pretty fun stuff and I'm SO thankful that CWF FINALLY has a heel that can believably go over top babys clean as a sheet without the baby losing ANYthing. That's how strong Corey is right now as a monster. With Ninja's gimmick and general persona, it can be very hard to pry true intensity out of him sometimes, but this was getting up there with the UNOD and Twisted Aggression feuds as far as a stand-alone match goes. **1/2 Post match we get another Corey-fan incident shoot although in a totally different vein than the near altercation last time as him and Stutts shake hands with...Justin Feeche.

Yes, after long, long back-and-forth conversations and "negotiations" (so to speak), Feeche appears in a CWF building. Not that the handshake SHOULD be newsworthy at all, especially considering it was a legitimate unplanned moment. But the simple fact is that it DID happen so let the rumors and livejournals begin rumbling. It's actually fascinating to me as the Feeche/CWF relationship kind of reminds me of the later days of Bret Hart/WWF. When you weren't sure what was real and what wasn't in what was aired on TV combined with all the backstage rumors. It's almost as if either party were to deny something at this point, that denial would be questioned by someone or another. Will Feeche ever wrestle for us? I hope so but I don't know. Will Feeche make it for more than five shows if he does? I hope so but I don't know. I don't like shoot angles. But I love reality-based angles, and without question, NO one plays off of reality more than CWF does. If the reality card is played here, I think it could be one of the most intriguing angles we've ever done.

6. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic TV champion Jesse Ortega pinned the Spoiler in 8:50 - An extremely solid psychologicaly sound matchup, but unfortunately, the pace was just murder on the crowd thanks to the insane length of some of the earlier matches. They were already drained and this didn't help matters. BUT I'd put it on TV in a heartbeat because it told a story that made sense and really, that's all you can hope for. Oh, and booooooo on Jesse for debuting his new gear tonight rather than on FNF. :P **1/2

-The contract signing for Ric Converse and Garry Stevens for FNF was held.

Excellent segment with all parties doing what they should be doing, wanting to get it on and not wait, a Kool-Aid drunken McAllister refusing it to go down "tonight because it's bad for business", and Garry giving Ric a final cheap parting shot. Lovely. It's on June 24th.

7. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic tag team champions $outh$ide Playas (J-Money and Will B. Smooth) defeated Mitch Conner and Tank Lawson in 10:50 - Whew boy...another very scary matchup on paper, especially considering the last time this matchup occurred on a TV taping it was pretty much an unequivocal disaster. Well, this one WAS an improvement on the last one but (am I sounding redundant yet?) went WAY too long. *3/4 Postmatch attack by the Street Sweepers, followed by Classic Rock actually woke the crowd up momentarily but even that segment went too long.

8. Mikael Yamaha pinned "Boggie Woogie Man" Rob McBride in 11:57 -

A rematch of the **** TV match from 2/19. Unfortunately, this one didn't quite live up as the crowd has been pretty much officially killed by this point and even with these two pros, have a hard time getting into it. However, upon Yam's entrance, it occurs to me that Yamaha is in the ring with Redd Jones for the first time since...well, since this...

last October and the now legendary Yamaha/Solo-Redd/Munkey match. So you just KNEW some shit was gonna go down. And sure enough, in one of the finest business exposing spots we've ever had at a TV taping, Yam does the 30 second Pat Patterson bendover while waiting for Lucha Boogie to fly through the air with a sunset flip. If I ever have suicidal tendencies I will simply make a "Great Moments in Yamaha History" comp tape, get drunk, and die laughing. The Sunset Flip, The Snake Eyes, The Moonsault, The Double Hip Toss...I could go on and on. Anyways, Yam goes over and then soils himself when he turns around and sees Corey, who lifts him in the air in celebration. Double-team on Rob as Munkey makes the save and goes absolutely apeshit, murderizing Corey with a lariat and a chairshot. See, there's this little tag match on June 24th too. Munkey/Rob-Corey/Yam. Bastard will break ***3/4 or I'm crying. Seriously though, Munkey's having a career year and he hasn't added one single move to his own repertoire (yes, that is a compliment). *1/2 Rob wanted to kick my ass after this match cause it pained me so much but then he bought me the "Dukes of Hazzard" pilot DVD, causing me to reverse my rating to ***1/2, thereby making all parties very happy. :P

Overall Thoughts - Make no mistake, I'm a company man through and through but still gotta be honest when it comes to our own shows. I would never outright shit on our product at all but in a case like this where it SHOULD have been a great TV taping, it fell short of that and I just HAVE to touch on those reasons. For one, this show was a collection of house show matches for the most part. Unfortunately, we were running a TV taping of 8 matches as opposed to the house show 6 matches which caused the show to drag onto a near-painful length. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE 99% of the guys I get to watch in action every week, but there's still a great deal that need to learn that less is more and they are just KILLING their heat by staying out there too long. If Ric, Jesse, and Corey-Ninja (the two singles champs, and a pretty big historical matchup) can ALL go under 10 minutes then there is NO reason everyone else can't do the same. I'm not saying that every match should be under 10, but when you're doing 8 matches, a couple of interview segments, and a TV taping in general, use your head and think of the big picture.

One another little topic I wanted to touch on in regards to the show and that being the lost art of the hot tag. It amazes me how many times recently I have seen a hot tag totally killed by one factor or another. Let me throw out a few basic rules to keep in mind for future hot tag sequences. Now remember, take this with a grain of salt cause I'm only the videoguy and since my in-ring training is somewhat limited, I don't really know what I'm talking about but...
1-If you're the baby, bump and sell AWAY from your corner rather than TOWARDS it.
2-For the love of god, if you're the heel, do NOT make the baby look like a flippin idiot by shooting him into his OWN CORNER IF HE'S NOT SUPPOSED TO MAKE THE TAG. Christ.
3-If you've been getting your ass kicked for more than 3 minutes then you don't just start arbitrarily running actual spots like you're completely fresh. You make the hot tag, get the fuck out of the ring, and then come back to fight again after that.

And finally, just a personal opinion that not EVERY single tag match EVER has to have a double down. Same goes for singles matches on that rule though. On a positive note, I AM extremely excited about what appears to be a resurgence in tag team wrestling in the area. Since 2000, we've pretty much ONLY had (at most) two legitimate tag teams at one time. Right now we've got the Playas looking better than ever, Classic Rock, and the Street Sweepers which is THREE, count 'em THREE! Plus, Puhhh-lenty of other legitimate combinations out there (as in NOT make shift duos). Exciting stuff since tag team wrestling in the Indys is usually a forced process at best.

Anyways, that's enough ranting for now and despite any criticism, I'm still lovin every second and just insanely jakked for this summer, FNF, the Weaver Cup, and all the other goodies. Love to ALL and I is outta here!

I was born 8/25/75; although I did attend an Elvis Presley Concert in Greenboro, NC 35 days BEFORE I was born (7/21/75). I Have lived in NC, MO, CA, GA, and WI. I went to high school at Northgate High School in Walnut Creek, CA (89-90) and Chapel Hill High School in Chapel Hill, NC (90-93). Attended one year at the Savannah College of Art and Design as a Video major (93-94). Worked at WAAP TV 16 in NC from 94-96; WLUK FOX 11 in Green Bay, WI from 96-97; and WGHP FOX 8 in High Point, NC from 97-99; doing various duties including Master Control, Directing, Technical Directing, Editing, Camera, and Audio opeartion. Started an on again/off again with Independent wrestling in 1997, holding video production for local shows (which was the early basis of Statmark Video itself). Then, in December 2000, Statmark Video went fulltime, handling video production for various Independent promotions around the state of NC including CWF Mid-Atlantic, the stand-out promotion in the Carolinas that embodies the heritage of the old MA territory. I handle videography, assistant producer, and color commentary chores for them. The broadcast can be seen throughout the Carolinas as well as parts of VA, GA, and NY on various cable outlets.
View my complete profile

July 2002 / Oct 2002 / Nov 2002 / Dec 2002 / Jan 2003 / Feb 2003 / Apr 2003 / May 2003 / Aug 2003 / Oct 2003 / Nov 2003 / Jan 2004 / Feb 2004 / Mar 2004 / Apr 2004 / July 2004 / Aug 2004 / Sep 2004 / Oct 2004 / Nov 2004 / Dec 2004 / Jan 2005 / Feb 2005 / Mar 2005 / Apr 2005 / May 2005 / June 2005 / July 2005 / Aug 2005 / Sept 2005 /

Brad Stutts
Randy Hedrick
Mikael Yamaha
"Slick" Ric Converse
Justin Feeche
Kamakazi Kid
Brass Munkey
"Dangerous E" Corey Edsel
"Rock N' Roll" Matty Dee
Jesse Ortega
Jeremy Ryan
Michael McAllister
Jesse McAllister
Katie Kincaid
KC McKnight
Trent Wylde
Tre G
Kurt Solo
Damage Inc
Moses Manson
Zane Dawson
Brad Rainz
Scott Keith
Raven Mack
Incredible Hulk
The Blue haired goddess, Zoe!

Brad Stutts
CWF Mid-Atlantic
Indy Insiders
"Dangerous E" Corey Edsel
Brass Munkey
"Boogie Woogie Man" Rob McBride
"Slick Diddy" Ric Converse
"Madd Trucker" Garry Stevens
Kamakazi Kid
American Steel Ninja
Amber O'Neal
Krissy Vaine
Katie Kincaid
Ultra Dragon
Justin Feeche
Tank Lawson
Kid Justice
SouthSide Playas
Gregory Vercetti
Randy Hedrick
Gemini Kid
Drake Tungsten
Trent Wylde
Joey Silvia

Mikael Yamaha & Sexton Tyler vs. Joey Silvia & Brad Rainz (11/8/03):
"That seriously is the worst match I've ever been at ringside for and I managed Mark Michaels." - Brad Stutts

"I thought that match was fucking great." - Mikael Yamaha

"A mother fucking Butterfinger beats the shit of a G-D Clark Bar" - Flagler

(well, 6 if you count God...)
My stepmom, Peggy
Sam Raimi
Jeff Rudd

August 25, 1975 (I was born, so yeah, it's up there)
July 21, 1987 (become officially hooked on wrestling)
October 17, 1989 (The California Earthquake)
June 10, 1994 (got first job in television)
April 26, 1996 (moved to Wisconsin)
March 28, 1999 (met Gee)
December 30, 2000 (the first CWF show)

1. Inner Happiness
2. Friends
3. Family
4. Affection
5. Health
6. Respect
7. Money
8. Food
9. Sunshine
10. Boobs

1. Shawn Michaels
2. Ricky Stamboat
3. Bret Hart
4. Chris Benoit
5. Kurt Angle

1. Barry Sanders
2. Steve Young
3. Randall Cunningham
4. Brett Favre
5. Don Beebe

1. Troy Aikman
2. John Elway
3. Randy Moss
4. Rob Johnson
5t. Kerry Collins
5t. Michael Irvin

(somewhat interchangeable depending on circumstances)
1. Carolina Panthers
2. Green Bay Packers
3. Cincinnati Bengals
4. Miami Dolphins
5t. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
5t. San Francisco 49ers

(somewhat interchangeable depending on who's being a bigger pain in the ass this week)
1. Dallas Cowboys
2. NY Jets
3. NY Giants
4. Baltimore Ravens
5. Washington Redskins

1. Frankfurt Galaxy (1996 NFLE home version)
2. Orlando Thunder (91-92 WLAF home version)
3. San Diego Chargers (powder blue throwback home version)
4. Cincinnati Bengals (basic '90s home version)
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1976-1995 home version)

1. 1994 NFC Championship (1/15/95): Dallas Cowboys (28) at San Francisco 49ers (38)
Notes: After two consecutive heart-breaking losses in the NFC title game to the Cowboys and the constant shadow of Joe Montana hanging over his head, Steve Young FINALLY gets over the hump in the most gratifying payoff to what seemed to be a never-ending chase that I've ever seen. I was literally jumping up and down on the control room table while at work at WAAP and still get chills to this day when watching hilights from the game. It was magic and I'll never forget it.
2. 1996 NFC Championship (1/12/97): Carolina Panthers (13) at Green Bay Packers (30)
Notes: While not a great game by any means, I lived in Green Bay during this one, having moved away from NC the year before and everything surrounding the game just has SO much meaning to me. The expansion Panthers go to where no one ever expected them to be while the Packers try and go to the SuperBowl after having not been there in 30 freakin' years. I do my best to try and cheer for the Panthers knowing that if they win, the suicide rate in Green Bay is going to skyrocket. You had to be in GB then to really understand what this game meant to those people and to their lives and they got their payoff. God bless them.
3. 2003 NFC Divisional Playoff (1/10/04): Carolina Panthers (29) at St. Louis Rams (23) (OT)
Notes: The emotionally draining double OT classic that by the end if it, I could barely cheer as I was about to pass out from exhaustion. Even now I can barely write anything about the game because it was THAT draining.
4. 1992 AFC Wild Card Playoff (1/3/93): Houston Oilers (38) at Buffalo Bills (41) (OT)
Notes: Even if you didn't give a crap about either team, if you watched football in the early 90s, you KNOW this game. I was on the way back from Florida, listening to some of the game in the car on the radio. Houston's up 35-3 in the 3rd quarter so I allow Dad to change the station. We check back awhile later at which point it sounded like OJ was reporting about the Bills victory...but that couldn't be right...could it?? Was the radio signal fuzzy...or was that the crowd? What the hell was going on in Buffalo? Was their a riot after the Bills lost? oh couldn't have.....OH MY GOD!!!
5. Monday Night Football (12/22/03): Green Bay Packers (41) at Oakland Raiders (7)
Notes: In one of the most incredible individual performances you could ever see, Brett Favre decides to not end his consecutive game streak and plays just one day after his father passed away from a heart attack. Incredibly, Favre throws for 399 yards and 4 TDs in a win that would become very vital in sending the Packers to the playoffs just one week later.
Honorable Mention:
SuperBowl XXIII (1/22/89): San Francisco 49ers (20) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (16) - the game that made me a fan for life.
SuperBowl XXV (1/27/91): NY Giants (20) vs. Buffalo Bills (19) - unbiasedly speaking, the best game I've ever seen.
1996 NFC Divisional Playoff (1/5/97): Dallas Cowboys (17) at Carolina Panthers (26) - the official arrival of the Panthers, and could there have been a better team to smack around?
Monday Night Football (12/18/00): St. Louis Rams (35) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (38) - the Bucs' revenge game after getting screwed in the '99 NFC title game.
2002 NFC Championship (1/19/03): Tampa Bay Buccanners (27) at Philadelphia Eagles (10) - The Bucs' finally get over the hump after being ousted by the Eagles in the playoffs two straight years and win the game no one thought they could win. I'll never forget the radio call as Rhonde Barber seals the deal with a 92 yard INT return as dreams had become reality and the freakin' BUCS were going to play in a SuperBowl.
Week 17 (12/27/03): Minnesota Vikings (17) at Arizona Cardinals (18) - All the Vikings have to do is hang onto an 11-point lead over the lowly 3-12 Cardinals with just 2 minutes to go in order to go to the playoffs and win the division. They then procede to pull off the biggest choke job ever, completely blowing it, missing the playoffs, sending a crowd at Lambeau Field 1,000+ miles away into a complete frenzy, with my favorite radio call ever as Arizona's Nate Poole catches the winning TD as time expires with the Vikings announcer screaming "Noooooooooooooo!" Noooooooooo!".

This is a list of MY favorite matches of all-time (well, at least for this week anyways)...yes, there ARE better matches workrate wise in some cases, but these are my personal favs, so quit arguin'.
1. Randy Savage vs. Ricky Steamboat (WrestleMania III, 3/29/87)
2. Bret Hart vs. Curt Hennig (SummerSlam, 8/26/91)
3. Ric Flair vs. Ricky Steamboat (Chi-Town Rumble, 2/20/89)
4. Ric Flair vs. Ricky Steamboat (WrestleWar, 5/7/89)
5. Rick Rude vs. Ricky Steamboat in a 30:00 Ironman match (Beach Blast, 6/20/92)
6. Ric Flair vs. Barry Windham (Crockett Cup, 4/11/87)
7. Chris Benoit vs. Kurt Angle (Royal Rumble, 1/19/03)
8. 1992 Royal Rumble (1/19/92)
9. Bret Hart vs. Davey Boy Smith (SummerSlam, 8/29/92)
10. Owen Hart vs. 1-2-3 Kid (King of the Ring, 6/16/94)
11. Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon in a Ladder match (SummerSlam, 8/27/95)
12. Shawn Michaels vs. Owen Hart (In Your House, 2/18/96)
13. Brian Pillman vs. Jushin Liger (SuperBrawl II, 2/29/92)
14. Brian Pillman & Steve Austin vs. Ricky Steamboat & Shane Douglas (3/2/93)
15. Curt Hennig vs. Tito Sanata (Saturday Night's Main Event, 7/16/90)
16. Shawn Michaels vs. Mankind (In Your House: Mind Games, 9/22/96)

1. Great American Bash '89
2. SummerSlam '91
3. WrestleMania III
4. WrestleMania XIX
5. WrestleMania XX
6. 1987 Survivor Series
7. Beach Blast '92
8. Canadian Stampede
9. SuperBrawl II
10. WrestleMania VIII

1. CWF Mid-Atlantic; April 17, 2004; Burlington, NC
2. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic "New Year's Knockout"; January 8, 2005; Burlington, NC
3. CWF/FWA-Carolinas "Triumph"; September 28, 2002; Graham, NC
4. CWF/FWA-Carolinas "Ultimatium"; January 26, 2002; Burlington, NC
5. CWF/AWA Mid-Atlantic "Night of the Mid-Atlantic Legends"; February 5, 2005; Seagrove, NC

1. VCW; March 16, 2001; Mt. Airy, NC
2. Wahoo McDaniel Memorial Show; July 13, 2002; Charlotte, NC
3. NMCW; February 16, 2002; Albemarle, NC
4. SWA 1st Anniversary Show; August 2, 2002; Huntsville, TN
5. Warriors of Wrestling; March 13, 2004; Southern Pines, NC

1. 1. San Francisco, CA
2. Orlando, FL
3. Green Bay, WI
4. Savannah, GA
5. Los Angeles, CA

1. Tokyo
2. NFL Hall of Fame - Canton, OH
3. Cedar Point - Sandusky, OH
4. Honolulu
5. Pontiac Silverdome

1. Busch Gardens (Williamsburg, VA)
2. Islands of Adventure (Orlando, FL)
3. Universal Studios (Los Angeles, CA)
4. Walt Disney World (Orlando, FL)
5. Universal Studios (Orlando, FL)

1. Elvis
2. Me First & the Gimme Gimmes
3. "Weird Al" Yankovic
4. Creedence Clearwater Revival
5. Bloodhound Gang

1. TGIFriday's
2. Applebee's 1. Tecmo Bowl
3. Madden 2003
4. Pro Wrestling
5. WrestleMania 2000

1. NFL Network
3. FOX
4. Boomerang
5. ESPN Classic

1. Dukes of Hazzard
2. Family Guy
3. King of the Hill
4. Incredible Hulk
5. Greatest American Hero

1. Evil Dead 2
2. Dead Alive
3. Army of Darkness
4. Rocky Horror Pitcure Show
5. Night of the Day of the Dawn of the Son of the Bride of the Return of the Revenge of the Terror of the Attack of the Evil Subhumanoid Flesh Eating Living Dead Part 2

1. The Crow
2. Puppet Master
3. Twice Dead
4. The Frighteners
5. Dawn of the Dead (2004)

1. Ferris Bueller's Day Off
2. Undercover Brother
3. Naked Gun
4. Christmas Vacation
5. Tommy Boy

1. Kill Bill Vol. 1
2. Con Air
3. Terminator 2
4. Back to the Future
5. Back to the Future 2

1. South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut
2. Space Jam
3. Who Framed Roger Rabbit
4. Lilo & Stich
5. Transformers: The Movie

1. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective
2. BASEketball
3. Dodgeball
4. The Replacements
5. Major League

1. The Crow
2. Spider-Man
3. Batman
4. Spider-Man 2
5. Howard The Duck

(or whatever they're called if there's more than three of them)
1. Evil Dead 1/Evil Dead 2/Army of Darkness
2. Clerks/Mallrats/Chasing Amy/Dogma/Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back
3. National Lampoon's Vacation series
4. Back to the Future
5. Nightmare on Elm Street

1. Tetsuo the Iron Man
2. Nekromantic
3. Nekromantic 2
4. Society
5. Motorama

1t. Darkman
1t. Psycho
3. Scooby Doo
4. There's Something About Mary
5. Man on the Moon

1. Rocky Horror Pitcure Show
2. Summer School
3. Cocktail
4. The Replacements
5. Dude, Where's My Car?

1. Bruce Campbell
2. No One Else Matters

1. Sam Raimi
2. Kevin Smith
3. Quentin Tarantino
4. Peter Jackson
5. John Woo

(excluding people I actually know for both their own sake and mine)
1. Noki-A (with the mask only!)
2. Trish Stratus
3. Pamela Anderson
4. Jillian Barberie
5. Lindsay Lohan (2003-2004 only!)

Brett Favre, Reggie White, Desmond Howard, The Rock, Steve Austin, Shawn Michaels, Vince McMahon, Mick Foley, Owen Hart

1. March (ACC tourny/March Madness/WrestleMania/Many noteable memories in relationship land from March/Start of Spring)
2. September (NFL Kickoff/Indy Rumble)
3. January (NFL Playoffs/Royal Rumble)

1. December (Start of Winter/The Headache that is the Holidays/The College Football Playoffs...oh, wait...what's that? They don't have any?? Freakin' morons.)

Barry Sanders
Walter Payton
Emmitt Smith
Earl Campbell
Jim Brown
Roger Craig
Gale Sayers
Billy Sims
OJ Simpson
Marshall Faulk
Thurman Thomas
John Riggins
Eric Dickerson
Larry Csonka
Franco Harris
Ottis Anderson
Marcus Allen
Edgerrin James
Steve Van Buren
Tony Dorsett
Jerome Bettis
Ricky Watters
LaDainlian Tomlinson
Priest Holmes
Eddie George

Bret Hart vs. Curt Hennig (8/26/91)
Bret Hart vs. Owen Hart (3/20/94)
Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin (3/23/97)
Bret Hart vs. Roddy Piper (4/5/92)
Bret Hart vs. Davey Boy Smith (8/29/92)
Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (11/25/92)
Bret Hart vs. Curt Hennig (6/19/93)
Bret Hart vs. Ric Flair (10/12/92)
Bret Hart vs. 1-2-3 Kid (7/4/94)
Bret Hart vs. Davey Boy Smith (12/17/95)

Sometime around WrestleMania XIV I believe, PWI put out this major WMania magazine and listed every single freakin' Mania match in order from best to worst (all 100+ of those suckers). So, on a much smaller scale, I present my pointless tribute to that, the CWF Mid-Atlantic Battlecade list of matches, from best to worst (5 Battlecades have been held for those oblivious to what the heck I'm yammering about).
1. "Slick" Ric Converse vs. CWF Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion "Dangerous E" Corey Edsel with Brad Attitude as the special guest referee (V)
2. CWF/FWA-Carolinas Heavyweight champion "Dangerous E" Corey Edsel vs. "Nite Stic" Eddie Brown (III)
3. Krazy K vs. Kamikazi Kid in the "Rising Generation League" tournament finals (IV)
4. CWF/FWA-Carolinas Cruiserweight champion Mikael Yamaha, Sexton Tyler, and Amber Holly vs. Caprice "Ice" Coleman and Main Attraction (II)
5. CWF Mid-Atlantic TV champion Mikael Yamaha vs. Xsiris vs. Kamikazi Kid vs. Number Man in a "Fatal 4 Way" match (V)
6. Gemini Kid and Mikael Yamaha vs. the United Nations of Devestation (Drake Tungsten & Hugh B. Johnson) for the vacant CWF/FWA-Carolinas tag team titles (III)
7. John Brooks and David Cole vs. Krazy K and Dexter Poindexter (V)
8. CWF/FWA-Carolinas Heavyweight champion Madd Maxx vs. "Nite Stic" Eddie Brown (II)
9. Kid Justice vs. Jesse Ortega in the "Rising Generation League" tournament finals for the vacant RGL title (V)
10. CWF Mid-Atlantic tag team champions Brass Munkey and American Steel Ninja vs. Drake Tungsten and Matt Houston in a non-title match (V)
11. CWF Cruiserweight champiobn Gemini Kid vs. Hot Property vs. Mikael Yamaha in a triangle match (I)
12. Maxx Madd vs. Ethan Cage in a Hardcore match (I)
13. Brass Munkey and American Steel Ninja vs. "Tremendous" Trent Wylde and CWF Mid-Atlantic Cruiserweight champion Xsiris (IV)
14. The $outh$ide Playas (J-Money and L.A. Cash) vs. Kenny James and Xsiris (III)
15. The Hirydaz (Mikael Yamaha and Gemini Kid) vs. CWF Mid-Atlantic tag team champions Brad Attitude and Brad Rainz in a hair vs. titles match (IV)
16. "Slick" Ric Converse vs. CWF Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight champion "Dangerous E" Corey Edsel (IV)
17. CWF/FWA-Carolinas Cruiserweight champion "Slick" Ric Converse vs. Joey "Spank" Silvia (III)
18. Rising Generation League champion Kamakazi Kid vs. Brad Attitude (III)
19. Garry "Madd Trucker" Stevens vs. Ryin Andrews (V)
20. Joey Silvia vs. Alex Stone (IV)
21. Sexton Tyler vs. Stephen O' Hara (III)
22. The $outh$ide Playas (J-Money and L.A. Cash) vs. Sean Powers and Mitch Norris (IV)
23. Rob "the Bull" McBride vs. "Tremendous" Trent Wylde (V)
24. Tony Platinum vs. J.T. Sparxx (II)
25. Don Kernodle vs. Black Hart (I)
26. The Wild Eyed Southern Boys ("Wild" Shane West & Gary "Madd Trucker" Stevens) vs. Dexter Poindexter and Rob "the Bull" McBride (IV)
27. Lexie Fyfe vs. Amber Holly (I)
28. Carolina Stud vs. Kid Courageous (I)
29. The Spoiler vs. "Classic" Chris Collins (V)
30. Bounty Hunter vs. Malaki (III)
31. The New $outh$ide Playas (J-Money and Will B. Smooth) vs. Alex Adonis and Jay Sinn (V)
32. "Mighty" Orlo Helmer vs. "Red Hot" Tim Blaze (V)
33. Ethan Cage, Kenny James, and L.A. Stevens vs. Granite, Johnny Blaze, and "Playboy" Bert Tripp (II)
34/35. Otto Schwanz vs. Dewey Cheatum and Pat Cusick in a guantlet match (III)
36. Rob McBride vs. Larry Isley (II)
37. CWF/FWA-Carolina tag team champions the Southside Playas (J-Money and L.A. Cash) vs. Otto Schwanz and Jeff Justice (II)
38. Fun Lovin' Criminal and Kozmo vs. Patrick O' Hara and J.P. Fairchild (I)
39. The Russians vs. Chris Collins and Deacon (III)

2/15/88, WWF
Hearns Coliseum; Columbia, MO
Notes: B-level house show with a 14-man battle royal as the main, won by Jim Brunzell as he dumped the Bolsheviks (payback for doing the job in tag action earlier on the show). Match of the night would easily by the Jumping Bomb Angels defending the WWF Women's tag team titles against the Glamour Girls.

3/7/90, WWF
Cow Palace; San Fracisco, CA
Notes: This was a 23-match, 3-week Wrestling Challenge taping and the "Ultimate Challenge Special" that aired on the USA network leading up to WrestleMania VI. The official main event was WWF World champion Hulk Hogan & the Big Bossman defeating Mr. Perfect & the Genius. In other action, WWF IC champion the Ultimate Warrior & Jake Roberts defeated Ted DiBiase & Akeem and WWF tag champs Andre the Giant & Haku defeated the Rockers by DQ.

6/10/90, MLB:
Oakland A's 3, Kansas City Royals 2
Oakland Coliseum; Oakland, CA
Notes: Jose Canseco is on the DL as then second-banana Mark McGwire carries the load. Multi-sport star Bo Jackson strikes out each time at the plate...and breaks his bat each time as well.
The Future: Oakland would go on to win the ALCS before being swept by Cincinnati in the World Series.

3/30 & 4/1/91; NCAA Final Four:
Kansas Jayhawks 79, UNC Tarheels 73
Duke Blue Devils 79, UNLV Rebels 77
Duke Blue Devils 72, Kansas Jayhawks 62
Hoosier Dome; Indianapolis, IN
Notes: Duke pulls one of the biggest upsets in tournament history, knocking off powerhouse UNLV en-route to winning their first ever national championship.

10/30/92, NBA:
LA Lakers, Cleveland Cavaliers
Dean Dome; Chapel Hill, NC
Notes: This otherwise forgettable perseason game would actually become fairly noteable as it would turn out to be Magic Johnson's final game before retiring due to the AIDS virus (and subsequent pressure). Of course he would end up returning to the NBA after a hiatus which rendered this game a little more meaningless.

2/17/93, ACC:
UNC Tarheels, Clemson Tigers
Dean Dome; Chapel Hill, NC
Notes: Clemson's Chris Whitney goes 8-10 from the 3-point line but Clemson remains winless 4EVER at UNC.
The Future: UNC would go onto win the 1993 NCAA National championship less than two months later.

2/25/94, NBA:
Atlanta Hawks 111, Milwaukee Bucks 100
Omni; Atlanta, GA
Notes: The Bucks were horrid at the time and the only saving grace to even watch the game was to see Dominique Wilkins play. Then, the day BEFORE the game, Wilkins gets traded to the other side of the country to the LA Clippers.
The Future: The Hawks would tie a franchise record with 57 wins this year and go to the second round of the playoffs before losing to Orlando

12/17/94, NBA:
Charlotte Hornets 111, Denver Nuggets 92
Charlotte Coliseum; Charlotte, NC
The Future: Charlotte would make the playoffs but go out in the first round to the Bulls.

8/15/95, MLB:
Baltiore Orioles 8, Cleveland Indians 3
Camden Yards; Baltimore, MD
Notes: This would be Cal Ripken's 2,110th consecutive game played, 21 before he broke Lou Gehrig's all-time record.
The Future: The Indians would go all the way to Game 6 of the World Series before finally losing to Atlanta.

3/31/96, WWF WrestleMania XII
Arrowhead Pond; Anaheim, CA
Notes: Shawn Michaels realizes his "boyhood dream" by defeating Bret Hart in OT of a 60:00 Ironman match. I can be seen clearly on the "Free-For-All" countdown show holding my "Shawn Is God Here" sign. I also attended the 1996 Slammy Awards, held the day earlier.

6/23/96, WWF 1996 King of the Ring
The Mecca; Milwaukee, WI
Notes: A pivotal show that led to the "boom" as Steve Austin coins his "Austin 3:16" phrase after winning the KOTR tournament. Also, WWF World champ Shawn Michaels goes over on Davey Boy Smith in a frequently overlooked match.

6/24/96, WWF RAW IS WAR
Brown County Arena; Green Bay, WI
Notes: A three-week taping for RAW, most noteably hilighted by the Ultimate Warrior defeating Owen Hart by DQ which would turn out to be Warrior's last WWF match EVER as he bailed on the company the next week. This show was also highlighted by Brian Pillman saying "GD" on live TV and two awesome Shawn Michaels matches, as he went over Billy Gunn and former partner Marty Jannetty in a tremendous outing.

3/23/97, WWF WrestleMania 13
Rosemont Horizon; Rosemont, IL
Notes: The defining WWF match of the boom as Bret Hart and Steve Austin put on a 5-star classic. I also attended the 1997 Slammy Awards, held the day earlier.

5/5/97, WWF RAW IS WAR
Brown County Arena; Green Bay, WI
Notes: This was the episode of RAW where the Hart Foundation would search throughout the arena for Shawn Michaels the whole night. The main event had Steve Austin pinning WWF European Champion Davey Boy Smith in non-title action. In a never-aired match taped for Coliseum Video that was never released, Brian Pillman wrestled his first match in over a year as he teamed with Davey Boy and Owen Hart against Steve Austin and the Legion of Doom.

9/28/97, WWF
Brown County Arena; Green Bay, WI
Notes: House show card main evented by the Undertaker defeating WWF World champion Bret Hart vby DQ. The show is most noteable for the fact that it was Brian Pillman's next-to-last match ever (he was pinned by Goldust) as he would pass away seven days later. Also on the show, Mankind defeated Hunter Hearst Helmsley in a falls count anywhere match.

2/5/99, WWF
Greensboro Coliseum; Greensboro, NC
Notes: House show card hilighted by Steve Austin defeating Kane, the Rock, and World champion Mankind in a fatal four way match.

5/10/99, NBA Playoffs Round One:
Atlanta Hawks 89, Detroit Pistons 69
Georgia Dome; Atlanta, GA
Notes: Dikembe Mutombo sets a personal playoff high with 28 points as Atlanta goes up 2-0 in their series.
The Future: Atlanta would win the series 3-2 before losing to the Knicks in the Eastern Conference semifinals. However, this game would be remembered more for getting absolutely trounced in the ratings by RAW which scored an 8.1 to the game's 1.7.

5/15/99, Break The Barrier
Viking Hall (ECW Arena); Philadelphia, PA
Notes: This was the very strong but poorly recorded joint Indy show at ECW Arena, put on by Scoops' Al Isaacs. Very strong show live that was never done justice on videotape.

6/27/99, WWF 1999 King of the Ring
Greensboro Coliseum; Greensboro, NC
Notes: Billy Gunn wins the KOTR tournament. Children cry.

9/27/99, WWF RAW IS WAR
Greensboro Coliseum; Greensboro, NC
Notes: The classic RAW with the Mick Foley-Rock "This Is Your Life" segment. This would also be the final RAW written by Vince Russo as he left the company later in the week. For actual wrestling content, the The Rock battled WWF World champ Triple H to a no contest when Davey Boy Smith attacked both men.

4/23/00, WWF
Greensboro Coliseum; Greensboro, NC
Notes: House show card with WWF tag team champs Edge & Christian defeated the Hardys and the Dudley Boyz in a triangle match main event. Noteable earlier matches were WWF European Champion Eddie Guerrero pinning Kurt Angle after Chyna interfered and the Rock & Chris Jericho defeating Chris Benoit & WWF World champion Triple H when Rock pinned Benoit.

8/29/00, WWF Smackdown
Crown Coliseum; Fayetteville, NC
Notes: Pretty basic SDown taping, highlighted by Al Snow winning the European title from Perrty Saturn and a Angle-Guerrero main event as the backdrop to HHH-Stephanie's relationship woes.

1/22/01, WCW Nitro/Thunder
Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum; Winston-Salem, NC
Notes: Dual TV taping hilighted by the WCW tryout/debuts of Christopher Daniels and Michael Modest in which Daniels nearly breaks his neck. Then on Thunder, Rey Misterio Jr. wins an awesome "Cruiserweight Contender Countdown" match (Gauntlet Match).

7/30/02, WWF Smackdown
Charlotte Coliseum; Charlotte, NC
Notes: Chris Benoit & Eddie Guerrero surprisingly jump from RAW to Smackdown and then go onto defeat Rock and Edge in the main. In other action, Hulk Hogan defeated Kurt Angle by DQ and Rey Misterio Jr. pinned Yoshihiri Tajiri.

9/16/03, WWE Smackdown
RBC Center; Raleigh, NC
Notes: Brock Lesnar defeats Kurt Angle in a 60:00 Ironman match to win the WWE Undisputed title. In other action, Eddie & Chavo Guerrero defeated Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin to win the Smackdown tag team titles.

10/27/03, NFL:
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 12, Carolina Panthers 9
Ericsson Stadium; Charlotte, NC
Notes: Bucs K Martin Gramatica hit a 47 YD FG with 47 seconds left for the win. QB Randy Fansani made his first ever NFL start for Carolina, going 5 for 18 with 46 yards and 3 INTs, never to be heard from again.
The Future: Tampa Bay would go on to defeat Oakland and win SuperBowl XXXVII


Chapel Hill, NC:

Green Bay, WI:

Walnut Creek, CA:

Orlando, FL:

Savannah, GA:

This is an extensive list of the movies I have reviewed since my BLOG originally debuted and the star ratings I gave them, from best to worst
***** - The Incredibles, Pauly Shore Is Dead
****3/4 - Kill Bill Vol. 1
****1/2 - Spongebob Squarepants The Movie, Bubba Ho-Tep, Spider-Man 2
****1/4 - Longest Yard, Saw, Dodgeball, Kill Bill Vol. 2, Shrek 2
**** - Sin City, A Dirty Shame, Friday Night Lights, Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, Mean Girls
***1/2 - Freddy vs. Jason, Bad(der) Santa, School of Rock, Club Dread, Dawn of the Dead (2004)
***1/4 - Napoleon Dynamite, Super Size Me
*** - The Grudge, Resident Evil: Apocalypse, Elf, Soul Plane, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star, 50 First Dates, Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, Daddy Day Care
**3/4 - Lilo & Stitch 2, Be Cool, The Girl Next Door, Rundown
**1/2 - Seed of Chucky, Fat Albert, Shark Tale, Mr. 3000, The Haunted Mansion, The Ladykillers, Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd, Scooby Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, Vampire Effect
**1/4 - Team America: World Police, Psycho (1998), Frostbite, Garfield, Lion King 1 1/2
** - Infection, Hitch, The Hulk, Without a Paddle, Eurotrip, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
*3/4 - Barbershop 2: Back in Business, Marci X, Gothika
*1/2 - Guess Who, Dave Chappelle - For What It's Worth, White Noise
* - Racing Stripes, Scary Movie 3
3/4* - Taxi, The Village, Along Came Polly

Starting back in 1992, my buds and I would do random Fantasy Sports Leagues and in tribute to those great moments and friends of years long since passed, here are the all-time results. Fantasy Baseball '92
Playoffs: Chris def. Dave 4 games to 0
Playoffs: Ben def. Grant 4 games to 1
World Series: Chris def. Ben 4 games to 2
Fantasy Football '92
SuperBowl: Grant def. Chris 21-19
Fantasy Basketball '92-'93
Playoffs: Chris def. Dave 2 games to 0
Playoffs: Grant def. Devon 2 games to 1
Finals: Chris def. Grant 3 games to 1
Fantasy Baseball '93
Playoffs: Devon def. Grant 4 games to 2
Playoffs: Chris def. Josh 4 games to 3
World Series: Devon def. Chris 4 games to 2
Fantasy Football '93
Playoffs: Chris def. Josh 83-62
Playoffs: Dave def. Grant 68-52
SuperBowl: Chris def. Dave 86-72
Fantasy Basketball '93-'94
Playoffs: Grant def. Jason 2 games to 0
Playoffs: Dave def. Devon 2 games to 1
Finals: Dave def. Grant 3 games to 2
Fantasy Baseball '94
Playoffs: -Strike Cancelled Season-
Fantasy Baseball '95
Playoffs: Grant def. Chris 4 games to 1
Playoffs: Josh def. Dave 4 games to 3
World Series: Grant def. Josh 4 games to 3

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